Friday, June 4, 1999

Scribes: June 4, 1999

Dear loveable Scribes:

Here I was, just about to add my two cents to that wacky and wild world of slang debating when you go around and say "But thanks for breaking up the endless slang debate that I seem to have unwittingly started." Now I'd feel bad if I said something. So I'll go on to my back-up subject. ("Back-up" in this context means "stupider", "crap", or whatever.)

I've noticed something. Look at you guys type the names of your games. Banjo-Kazooie. Perfect Dark. Jet Force Gemini. Donkey Kong Country. Diddy Kong Racing. Blast Corps. And etc. You put them in bold-faced type. Now, my strained brain puts together the following logic: If I could type the name of one of your secret upcoming games, you'd make it bold and we'd know the title of one of the secret titles. What about... Oh drat. Hmmmm, I can't think of anything besides crap names. Well, maybe someone else would care to give it a shot.

Speaking of naming games, for Jet Force Gemini, did you look at the coffee-brand "JFG" and wonder what it could be an acronym for? "Jumping Frogs Galore?" you say, "Or Jetting Frogs to Germany?" (That's not a reference to a certain European nation, trust me.) "What about Joyful Freaks for Gelatin?" After about two days of this, you think up Jet Force Gemini when a designer comes in asking for a good name for a new game. You just happened to be mumbling your new saying and the designer picks up on it and likes it. Of course, you're oblivious to all that went on and you're about to think of another name when your pants fall down. After picking them up, you forget what you were saying and go about your business. (Feels draft and stoops to pick up pants)

Do you guys get David Letterman over there? I think he's funny and and like his show. How about you?

Rare Says:

No, we don't get Mr. Letterman. We just get a load of B-list Brit TV personalities trying to 'get with his stylee'.

Your accidental-boldage theory might hold some water if it wasn't for the fact that game names tend to remain unfixed until late in the day, meaning that until that point they'll get italics rather than bold text, just like any other game title I could make up. Like
Kate Winslet's Quest For Rhubarb, or something. Then, of course, there's the risk of me lying through my teeth and claiming that work is underway on Belgian Pygmy Line Dancing 64, which I'm certainly unscrupulous enough to do, as you can see. Still, feel free to give it a go.

You've just made up this so-called 'JFG coffee'.

Dear Scribes,

I have a couple of Goldeneye niggles. Firstly, in your web pages you say that the GE team watched the film many times. How then can they miss that Bond's watch changes from the start of the film to the end? In the Cuban control room, after Bond is captured, Trevelyan takes his watch and says something like "Ah - a new version. Still press here, do I?" (to disarm the remote mines). i.e. The watch he had when he was 006 (in the facility) is older than the current one that Q has supplied.

Secondly, who arsed up by not including a demo of the game when there's no controller pluged in? All you get is some pants message on the screen. I bet you'd have sold 10 times as many copies (and maybe N64s) if the same demo ran as it does when there is a controller pluged in. All the shops I've been past still have Mario's ugly mug on the N64 screen in the window. I hope you don't make the same mistake with PD.
Iain F. McLaren

Rare Says:

Straight over to the designer, then...

"Hello? Is there anybody there? Check the part of the film you mention, where the two watches are held side by side. Is there any discernable difference between the two in the film? No? That 006 still disarms mines by using the watch in exactly the same way should have given you a hint, but no...

"All the people who run the shops have to do is leave a controller 'pluged' in to let the game run a demo. And in addition to this, potential buyers could have played the game there and then. I witnessed this unbelievable phenomenon several times.

"As far as sales go, believe me, no-one would be happier than me if GoldenEye sold sixty-four million copies. Except Pierce Brosnan, perhaps."

Dear Scribes,

I want to know something. Why do I have to go through all of those mazes and pictures in Banjo-Kazooie when Bottles can just dig around and go wherever he wants? Why can't I just crawl down in his mole hole and follow him to the top of the tower and he can give me all the moves on the way up. Then I can whip Gruntilda's arse and proclaim myself the Conquerer. Yeah, that'd be nice...

Hold on, this isn't Scribes, is it? I have to ask a real question here, don't I? Ummmmmm, uhhhh, what'd you eat for breakfast this morning?

Rare Says:

Breakfast? Pah. Breakfast is for... er... people who get up in time. And your Bottles theory is just daft. Banjo's a bear, man! How's he supposed to get down a mole tunnel? Especially with a backpack on. And can you really see him squeezing up the inside of a flagpole? You just haven't thought this through, have you?

Dear Scribes,

Listen, I don't know if this is a letter for my Uncle Tusk or just Scribes. It's all the same to me.

First off, I just recently visited your sight for the first time and I've fallen in love with it. You guys are awesome!! I'm a little behind the times as far and internet and stuff goes, so forgive me for not having responded earlier.

Here are some of my questions that I would appreciate an answer to please since I've seen some pretty dumb letters printed on the site before (although those are some of the funniest since you just rip on the writer!).

1. Do you always plan on making games exclusively for Nintendo or do you want to make games for other platforms? I personally like the fact that you're Nintendo only and I hope you stay that way.

2. I've heard that Banjo-Kazooie and Twelve Tales are your "guinea pigs" on which you're trying all your experiments for the big mother of them all, Donkey Kong 64. True?

3. Why was the decision made to not let Bond fall off walkways and the such?

4. Also, does Donkey Kong officially belong to you or Nintendo? I thought it was Miyamoto's baby.

5. And finally, Does Nintendo own you or are you free to do as you please?

Keep up the great work!
Kevin Hales

Rare Says:

1. We have no plans to develop for anyone else in the foreseeable future. Now look, you've made me use the word 'foreseeable' (twice) and I don't even know how to spell it.

2. Not exactly. The three games have been worked on simultaneously by three different teams, so it's not as if they could simply nick an existing 3D engine. But naturally some of the most popular aspects of Banjo will filter through to DK64.

3. Have you ever seen him do it in films?

4. Disturbing phrasing, but yes, DK is and has always been a Nintendo original that we have the privilege of 'doing stuff' with.

5. Nintendo has a hefty stake in Rare, but doesn't actually own the company as such. We come up with our own ideas, but work closely with them on everything along the road to completion. After all, they've had a fair bit of experience down the years, wouldn't you say?

Dear Scribes,

Why are there no games in which a kipper has the starring role? We feel cheated that a bear, a kinky squirrel and a braindead dog (Lupus) have stolen the fame from these most salty creatures. For shame!!!!! Doesn't a kipper share the same talents, sexy body and lovably, cuddly nature. We would like this problem sorted soon (per chance could Joanna Dark possibly become a huge 5' 6 salty kipper?) You probably think that we are joking don't you... don't you... DON'T YOU... well we aren't, in fact we are going to produce a poll to prove that this noble point of view is the only point of view. You have not heard the last of Seb and Alex yet. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.
Nigel Revitt

Rare Says:

I can't believe you're actually expecting me to print rubbish like... oh.

Dear Brigadier Loveday OBE BSoc. Twt.

I was delighted, d'you hear me? DELIGHTED! Overrun with glee. Fraught with pleasurable tinglings at what the new Perfect Dark / Gameboy camera interface could mean to the multiplayer games at our house.

I see a small, nervous fox terrier named 'Doobie' held end-up and snapped. I see the resultant picture wrapped around a face model in PD. I see one regular 4 player game of PD being quickly fought and the loser forced to play the loathsome character of DogRing the Evil Cyclops in the next match. Such fun!

Were we a different household, the winner could be named DogsKnackers in a similar spirit, as a reward for cunning. But it is punishment, not reward that turns a young man from the path of vice. Mother never spared the birch, so why should I?

I was also considering a character whose head was a picture from a Swedish, um, efficiency magazine, but I doubt the GBC has the resolution. Thank you again.

Oh, and sorry I couldn't offer greetings on the day, but HAPPY BIRTHDAY RAREWHERE! I love yez! You're the site on the net that makes me giggle most. The twonks at ign64 think they're funny, but... whoops there I go again. Keep up everything you're doing at Rare. *mwaah*


Rare Says:

Bless. We aim to please. And IGN64, well, you know, they try hard, but they still haven't got to grips with the whole arse thing, let alone started on knackers.

It's just the sort of whimsical multiplayer malarkey you describe that the GBC idea was intended for, though perhaps with not quite so sharp a focus on animals' backsides and porn. We can only hope that the latest tiresome media frenzy doesn't blow it all out of the water...

By the way, your new friend's still waiting for a hug down in Snippets.

Dear Scribes,

Ahem, my name is Wes McKinney, webmaster of the elite Goldeneye Extreme, as well as the webmaster of the fantastic world record site, which contains around 2000 record times. Now, I look at a mail from a guy who claims he can only get 59 on runway agent. Well, I got 24. And 6 other people got 24 seconds. TWENTY-FOUR SECONDS. And here is a video of 24 seconds on the internet:

The player is Sterling Neblett. Also, on the Egyptian Temple level, we know the fastest time possible is around 50 seconds. If you'll notice in the world records (Please have a look, we have the best times I have seen that are not fake, and are proven), the best times for Agent, SA, and 00 are 52/54/54. Here is a video of 53. I am the player.

Also, Dam, Agent. The best possible time is 55 seconds. "Anything under a minute shouldn't be sniffed at." Ha, what a joke. You write a column, get your facts straight. Want a video? I'll make you one of 56 seconds (my best time).

So here are the records we have on the site. I laughed so hard at that email because we are the greatest 007 players in the world. Of course, we is me, Sterling Neblett, Steven Zwartjes, and Patrick Wessels. Steven Zwartjes is the 3-time Dutch Nintendo Championship Winner. Patrick Wessels won the N64 magazine Goldeneye Tournament.

You might include this site in your column, to show the best times in the world. If you will notice, also, there are a hundred or more screenshots of people's times. 99% of them are from Sterling Neblett and I, because we spent $300 on a multimedia capture card for our computers.
Wes McKinney

Rare Says:

You should have sent this one to Uncle Tusk. I'm sure he'd have taken great pleasure in letting you know that you come across as a complete arse. But never mind, let's pass it along to the GoldenEye designer and see what he has to say...

"I worked on the game, so I am perfectly capable of getting my facts straight. Sadly, and to the detriment of your letter, you failed to notice that he got a time of 59 seconds on the *Dam* level. Not the Runway level. And I said 'anything under a minute *unaided* is nothing to sniff at'; the time of 36 seconds was achieved while using the 'fast' cheat (as I suspect any others around that mark were as well).

"I would point out that it really doesn't matter how long you take to do any level in GoldenEye as long as you are having fun while you play it. I bet Sean Williamson has fun."

Dear Scribes,

What is the deal with the chipmunk female lady person Berri from the upcoming Conker games? Conker is a squirrel, right? And Berri is a chipmunk, right? I always had the impression that Conker and Berri were just good friends, but in the May issue of Nintendo Power, they call Berri Conker's sister! First of all, that's the story to Banjo-Kazooie. Second of all, how is Berri supposed to be Conker's sister if they are two different species of rodents? Is that even legal? Please explain this to us.

Oh yes, and arse.

Rare Says:

That's right. Even we're not that dense. Berri's just Conker's 'best mate' - they must be thinking of Banjo and Tooty with the whole sister thing. Mind, you'd swear we weren't sure ourselves sometimes. (Cough.)

No lavatorial references or underwear questions this month, Mr. Slush? What's wrong with you?

Dear Scribes,

On the topic of the word 'arse' (oh, sorry Kat, that should be aahse) and its comedy decline, I'm proud to say that I've moved to 'botty'. Honestly, how many of our American... erm... chums will EVER have heard this rather excellent word? And with the simple addition of 'bog', 'knackers' or in extreme cases, 'shpadoinkle' in the same sentence, it's easy (and fun too) to confuse and alienate a big ol' chunk of your audience. Heh heh heh...

Pants on the Kongs, eh? How about some insider info on the leg-wrappings sported by the new cast (what were their names again? Lanky, Chumpy, Blinky, Tanky and Wa... hmm, maybe not). What the public wants isn't screenshots, videos and all that tat, we need some kind of pants analysis (conducted by our resolutely 2D underwear-sporting hero, even?) Please? And also, while I'm ranting on the whole ape-related theme (you called them the M-word on the DK64 preview, you devious fiends), I'd really appreciate a cameo from Chimpy the Chimp, surely the brightest star in B-K, if you don't mind.

I'd also like to draw your attention to the *actual* first instance of constipation in videogames. Only one game released from your (apparently) warm nestling 'twixt the botty cheeks of the big N last year? Sounds like someone needs to hit the All-Bran fast...

Finally, I have decided that we actually need to add the letter 'u' to our words after that 'stupid Brits' remark. Colour and armour are simply not enough any more, it's time to roll out the big guns. How about telephoune, aloune, souwn, mouan etc? (Evil laughter slowly recedes into the distance.)

Well, we can at least be grateful that I got through a whole letter without even one image of a game character in a compromising position.
The Cussing Snake
PS - I still want my Discos, you know.

Rare Says:

'Botty' went out with
The Young Ones, I'm afraid. Which gets quite a lot of airplay in America, so I expect more people will have heard of it than you'd imagine. The continued usage of 'bog' and 'knackers' is of course essential to British culture, but I entirely disown this 'shpadoinkle' of yours.

Maybe we'll sort out a DK64 Pants Analysis when the game's nearer completion and the pant situation is finalised. Or perhaps someone would like to jump the gun and get to it first. Please?

PS Better get out there with the camera then, hadn't you? The offer still stands...

Dear Scribes,

There have been many doubts recently as to whether or not you're ever going to release Twelve Tales: Conker 64. It was announced yonks ago and has been delayed for months. What is going on? Could you just answer two questions on the subject for me? Thank you.

Question 1...

Why was Conker delayed? it was supposed to have been released by now and I'm losing my patience. I can appreciate that release dates slip, but you haven't released anything for so long it's unbearable! And now to rub salt in my wounds, to kick me when I'm down you've postponed the release of Jet Force Gemini!

Question 2...

Is there a new release date for it and if not why not! Surely it can't be that difficult to estimate how long it will take you to finish it, add a month or two and suggest it as a possible release date!

Well, there you have it, two low quality questions that won't recieve a straight answer. If it wasn't for the new DK64 screen shots I think I would probably kill myself.
David Edwards

Rare Says:

Okay. Twelve Tales was originally delayed for the simple reason that it wasn't going to be meet the deadline, but as time wore on we realised that the market situation was changing and that the game needed a pretty significant revamp if it was going to have the impact that we'd originally hoped for. So yes, we do still have plans to Twelve Tales, and the team are still working on it full-time: we just can't give you a date right now. It's more difficult than you think to make that kind of estimate. Should the game go ahead in its current form - and I can assure you that it'll be worth looking forward to if it does - we'll update the preview accordingly.

And we didn't postpone JFG's release - we never set a solid date in the first place. As we've always said, it'll be ready when it's ready.

Dear Scribes,

Wow. Some guy wanted to insult that FLEAB fellow just like I did. And then FLEAB apologized (with pretty good spelling to boot) for his actions! All will now remember the name Packerac, crap I forgot I changed my name.

Anyway, the point of writing this letter (besides notifying the two or three people out there who actually care that I have changed my screen name) is to discuss Ms. Dark. Yes, I know. Time and time again (actually only twice, I think) you denied me information regarding Perfect Dark. I have to ask you a question or two (fine, just one). Oh, don't bother to answer, I wouldn't expect that from my favorite Brit. Ahem, is Perfect Dark going to be a franchise or just one game?

Oh, one more thing Mr. Kinda-Down-On-The-Word-"Arse"-Right-Now-So-How-About-"Knackers"-Man. Have you fellows considered doing an Austin Powers game?
VillainMan (moving from Packerac state of mind)

Rare Says:

The designer says: "Let's see how the first game does before announcing a franchise, hmmm?"

Austin Powers? Nahhh. I mean, who'd want to bother spending hours on end motion-capturing and modelling Liz Hurley, or Heather Graham, or... or... Good Lord.

Scribers (no, that doesn't work now, hmmm...)

First off, it seems that the only way to get your attention is to talk about a) Tiptup b) how many ways Americans and everything about them sucks or c) write about something that has nothing to do with Scribes. So in attempting to have this letter printed (because you guys don't respond any other way) here is something that includes all three of the above.-> Tiptup is actually a drunk American who supports communism and buys only games with tons of gore and sex. And dukes of hazard rool.

Even if there is a remote possibility that this letter is printed, you will most likely only answer the previous statement and not what my actual statement is. Oh well, here it goes. I want to know EXACTLY why the Cradle level in multi was left out of Goldeneye. Let me explain.

See, I have a gameesharkey (spelled incorectly because I'm certain you have a word check on this that deletes the letter if mentioned, it's a coverup I tell you) and one of the things it lets me do is to access the Cradle level in multiplayer. Now I admit that most of their codes are crap or weird, but this was just fine.

I would like to see your response and everyone else's to this letter. Thank you for your time.
Scott Gajewski

Rare Says:

The cold truth is that your previous letters weren't printed because they were dull, not because they mentioned the GameShark. We're not allergic to it, you know, and it's not nearly as controversial as you seem to think. Those people who want to use it to play substandard multiplayer levels have no doubt already done so: the rest of us can appreciate that there must have been good reason to leave them out. As the team says about the Cradle in particular, "We tried it, it ran too slowly, we took it out of multiplayer." At the end of the day all the levels were tested for multiplayer compatibility, the best were left in, and there's nothing more to it than that.

Dear Scribes,

Meet Mr. Arse kicking Evil Arse's... well, arse!

Purdy ain't it?

[Missing RPA: evilarse.gif "Hectic Take-No-Prisoners Arse Action"]

Rare Says:

Erm, alright then. If you're lucky, "evil arse" could become as 'widespread' a saying as "good arse", used when someone performs a particularly audible methane expulsion. "Good arse, sir!" Come on, surely that's not just me.

Dear Scribamanationisms,

The following has come to my attention:

A title character in the upcoming Perfect Dark, is Joanna Dark. Right? Well, let's put on our history thinking caps for a moment... they DO have schools in Twycross, right? Well, if they do, then you'd be, perhaps, familiar with a certain 'Joan of Ark'. You know... the one who did many good deeds for the French, and was burned at the stake by the English... Anyway, her name IN FRENCH is pronounced, and presumeably spelled like so: Joanna D'Ark. Now, is this a bizarre coincidence, an example of Rare's creativity, or lack thereof? You tell me...
BILL (of Blab Magazine)

Rare Says:

Not me, guv. Here's the PD designer:

"Joan of Arc is spelt 'Jeanne d'Arc' in France. So you're wrong on that point. As for the origins of Joanna's name, well...

"Twycross has schools, yes. And a pub, a tractor rental place, a church, a cricket pitch, a Zoo and a shop that sells bits of animals. The last two are unconnected."

He's forgetting the 'village green' - a triangle of grass big enough for at least five people to stand on at the same time. Oh, and the posh school. Marvellous.

Dear Scribes,

Have you ever been surprised by the sheer stupidity of people on the internet? When you applied for the job (or perhaps got roped into it kicking and screaming) did you ever anticipate the immense amount of free time your loyal readers, myself included, would have to type and send in pages of complete shmack - all in an attempt to get 5 minutes of glory by having our letters posted on your web page?

Oh well, I'm off to enjoy the cheap thrill having my letter printed gives me.

Rare Says:

Actually, I just make them all up. That way I spare myself the indignity of having to think up any bona fide answers while shattering the dreams of thousands of eager children worldwide into the bargain. Hyuk hyuk hyuk.

Dear Scribes,

It must be nice having a larger "car park". Now all of the cars can go out to play together. What kind of entertainment does your car park contain? I'd assume that roller coasters and similar rides would simply bore cars, because all they ever do is move about. I think I understand now. A car park is a place where cars go to sit on their ar... um... tires and relax. It must be quite similar to a parking lot. If you welcome visitors, I'd like to take my car on vacation to your car park. We don't have any of those in America.

Rare Says:

Sigh. You're going to kick off a whole new debate if you're not careful - one even more trivial than anything this page has suffered before. Which is the more stupid saying: 'car park' or 'parking lot'?

Anyway, you're supposed to be power made flesh. Haven't you got anything better to do with your time?

Dear Scribey,

I have a confession to make. I love my N64, but have yet to buy a single Rare game. I will soon make amends for this despicable behaviour and get Goldeneye and maybe Blast Corps. I would certainly have bought Killer Instinct if you'd put a bit more effort into it.

This brings me nicely to my question:

Why is Rare so gay? Your characters are all cutesy animals with sweet little names like Banjo and Luftus. (Eh? - Ed)

Leaving aside Goldeneye (your most successful game) and Perfect Dark (your most highly anticipated game) everything else has the kind of twee-factor that can only possibly irritate any player of 14+.

I hope I can make a polite suggestion without causing you any offence, but please stop all this arsing around with nauseatingly cute 3D platformers. I am looking forward to playing DK64, but why didn't you try to give us the fighting game we want, or the RPG we've been crying out for. Instead of making 3 of the 4 games up for a '99 release so whimsical.

Yours sincerely
Cynical old b&*%*$d
P.S. I hope you will put this letter in your Scribes section with your usual top wit and charm. Alternatively you could take a print off, roll it up into a tight ball and shove it up your...

Rare Says:

So apart from GoldenEye, Perfect Dark and Blast Corps, which aren't gay and which you liked, and
Killer Instinct, which isn't gay but which you didn't like, and of course DK64, which is gay but which you still like, all our games are gay and you don't like them. Am I right? If so, that's a hell of an argument you've got there, son.

Dear... oh, Idunno... Isn't-it-a-lovely-day (catchy nickname if ever there was one... or not),

The latest Scribes was put up eight updates ago as of writing this (had to resort to complicated math equations to figure that one out...had to use fingers on both my hands to count). Just so you know, I'm getting bored, and may have to repeatedly send aimless e-mail to you until the next Scribes comes along and alleviates me of this mind-atrophying stagnation. What the hell am I talking about? It's not like Scribes is a showcase of high intellectual discussion. So maybe I'm just looking for another letter of mine in Scribes to further my complacent nature. The aniticipation excites me.

See that? That was the paragraph with the big words. This paragraph won't do that anymore. And I'll stop saying 'paragraph' too, because it has over eight letters. I like puppies. Maybe Rare could start making puppies instead of games. Or candy. That would be exciting.

Okay. I'm done for now. Post this one and let the people hate me for my sharp wit. Or that could be idiocy accompliced with a developed vocabulary. Next time around, my rhetoric will be filled to the britches with self-depracating humor. Isn't that exciting?

Shut up Ran,

Rare Says:

Yeah, it's been a while since the last Scribes. Sorry. E3 and all that. Still, there's another collection of Scribage lurking around half-finished somewhere as we speak, so it won't be too long before you'll need to take a firm grip on those britches of yours for yet another breackneck trip-hop voyage into the flabbergastingly scintillating wit and verve of our quasar-hot readership think tank.


Kat, what can I do to show you I'm sorry. I feel like I am running in circles for you. Tell me. Please. I'll do almost anything. Please? Please?!

Rare Says:

Brief Encounter, eat your heart out.

What's up with you Brits claiming "arse" is all yours? I'm Canadian and I've used "arse" all my life. Along with "ass" and "butt".
Jonathan Sharkey

Rare Says:

and ass? That's just greedy. Make your mind up, man.

Two of my favorite things are from England! RARE AND DEF LEPPARD!
Faye Collsion

Rare Says:

I'd like to say thanks, but, well, you've made it a bit awkward.

I eat arse... I like arse... I like the taste of arse bacon.
Wayne Thompson

Rare Says:

Just as well bacon is actually made from pigs' arses then, eh?

Will you post any screenshots of Jo Dark nude? Or perhaps Banjo? Hell, I'll settle for Tusk!!
Rare Says:

I think we're sailing pretty close to the wind with Mr. Pants.


Rare Says:

And you are an AOL user tat is typical. wArEZ ROoL!"!!1!

How do your boys react to being called "stone-faced funsters"?
Ross Shannon

Rare Says:

We've got the hammers ready. Who said it? Come on.

Any particular reason why Banjo's cuckoo clock is stuck at 7:50?
Amanda Schroeder

Rare Says:

Of course there is. But, er, it'd take far too long to explain.

Have you ever wanted to go up to one of those guys who decodes enemy messages during times of war and say "Hey pal, decode this!" and then punch him in the gut? It's funny because he might get hurt.

Rare Says:

Just how much time have you people got on your hands, anyway?

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